I define consistent innovation as the ability of a team to repeatedly add value to the business. Many organizations lose their ability to innovate at scale, and this is incredibly frustrating to both leaders and the members of the product teams. It's one of the main reasons people often leave large companies for startups.
But losing the ability to innovate is absolutely and demonstrably not inevitable. Some of the most consistently innovative companies in our industry are very large—consider Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Netflix as examples.
Organizations that lose the ability to innovate at scale are inevitably missing one or more of the following attributes:
- Customer‐centric culture. As Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon says, “Customers are always beautifully, wonderfully dissatisfied, even when they report being happy and business is great. Even when they don't yet know it, customers want something better, and your desire to delight customers will drive you to invent on their behalf.” Companies that don't have this focus on customers—and direct and frequent contact with them—lose this passion and critical source of inspiration.
- Compelling product vision. By the time many companies reach scale, their original product vision is now largely realized, and the team is struggling to understand what's next. This is often compounded because the original founders may have moved on, and they were likely the keepers of the vision. In this case, ...